Interview with Jonas Winterhalter
With mountains, please
Jonas Winterhalter pursues an unusual sport, an extreme sport - running. From 42,195 kilometres (marathon distance) Jonas is slowly getting comfortable. Preferably 100 kilometres or more. This is called an ultramarathon. But in the mountains, please. If it is not in the Himalayas, the (Swiss) Alps offer themselves for it. Or around the Mont Blanc massif? 170km. For 100km it takes about 20 hours. The duration is limited by the organizers to 28 hours in order to filter out under-trained competitors. So start running 2pm and arrive 10am the next morning. Without sleeping.
There is no limit. Sidney-Melbourne, for example, that's about 1,000 kilometers. However, it is then allowed to sleep in between. There are also people who can sleep in the go.
The training takes Jonas Winterhalter about 10 to 20 hours per week. Sometimes he likes to take 6 stages of the Black Forest long-distance hiking trails in one go.
However, extreme commitment is nothing new for Jonas. For 6 years now he has been giving it the shape of the ultramarathon. With 1 to 2 competitions per year. Since his master project in 2012, he has given it a form with his big band. Already in his youth he gave it a form by parallel participation in 8 big bands at the same time. That's probably how he got into jazz. As a wind player you quickly end up in a big band because it takes so many of them, he says.
In the beginning, mountain sports influenced composing. In the meantime, however, both disciplines had a life of their own. But the most important transfer is certainly: endurance and mental strength. You get much less tired. If the body thinks it can't now, then there's still a long way to go.
Jonas Winterhalter started playing the trumpet at the age of 11. Without musical role models in the family. This is also a solid performance for a boy just before adolescence. Jonas is "trapped" between two sisters, an older and a younger one.
His own music agency
Jonas Winterhalter has remained loyal to the amateur big bands, but now from a different perspective, that of the conductor. He leads the big band of a music society in Freiburg im Breisgau. At the Basel Jazz School he completes a workload of 4 lessons. Privately, he is currently leading one student through the shallows of jazz harmony. But he would rather not teach at all.
The man from Freiburg has enough other ideas to occupy himself with. He is currently setting up a music agency together with Sarah Chaksad (Basel alto saxophonist and also big band composer and director). A graphic designer and a business economist. With Esteam-Music GmbH they book and manage internationally renowned Swiss-related musicians such as Wolfgang Muthspiel, Adrian Mears, John Hollenbeck or Lisette Spinnler.
But his main project is and his heart and soul goes into his Jonas Winterhalter big band. The first CD Eleven Things to say was released on Neuklang in April 2017. For April 2019 a residency of the whole big band in Nepal at the local conservatory is planned. Concerts are to be played every evening for a week. All musicians are to lead workshops at the conservatory.
Further band projects:
<Sarah Chaksad Orchestra. Concerts are planned for the end of 2018. Among others at the Bird's Eye Basel and the Arosa Jazz Festival. Next is a new studio production in January 2019.
Janto's Oktaeder - the Post-harmonic Orchestra. Jonas is the leading figure in the brass section. His overview of arrangement structures, his routine as lead trumpeter and his enormous repertoire of possibilities for action are essential for the success of the band.